My first monthly (well, I say ‘monthly’… but I’ve never really been an actual monthly artist) assigment was the FLASH series at DC starting back in 1993 (yikes…. just seeing that date makes me feel old). I’ll say right up front that I wasn’t ready for a monthly assignment at the time. Other than sample pages, a mini series for a small publishing company and a couple of short stories for JUSTICE LEAGUE QUARTERLY, I’d never worked on something as daunting as a regular title. And it WAS very daunting. I was lucky in that my writer was Mark Waid and his stories were wonderful constructions to have to work with as a young artist. I’ve said in many interviews that Mark always challenges me with the kinds of things he asks me to draw. They’re always difficult to pull off (and I’ve had varying degrees of success)– but they’re always interesting. The thing about working with Mark on FLASH was that EVERYTHING he asked me to draw was challenging– but that’s because I’d had very little experience in drawing much of anything at the time. There’s nothing like being thrown into the crucible of working on a monthly title early on to make you grow and change as an artist. When I look at my first issue of FLASH I still cringe. I have to give a lot of thanks and credit to Brian Augustyn and Ruben Diaz (my editors on the book) for sticking with me and letting me learn and grow on the job. I also owe a lot to Mark Waid for being patient with me in butchering his terrific scripts early on– but not freaking out and asking for my head.

Now, FLASH is a character that I think I would like to revisit at some time. Maybe it’s the George Lucas in me, but I look back at those early issues, and I feel like making amends for them. I’d like to do at least a short run (no pun intended) on the book at some point to make up for those cruddy early efforts. The funny thing (or disheartening, depending on the mood I’m in at the time) is– I still meet folks at almost every show I go to that count my work on FLASH as their absolute favorite of mine. I feel as though I’ve grown immensely as an artist over the years since then– but I can see where their coming from. It’s fun to watch a new artist really learning on the job and watching them emerge. I’ve enjoyed that with many of my favorites I’ve watched since I first became a fan.

This is Entry 232.


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